While we’re on the subject of the Hilldale “open air shopping and lifestyle center,” I also support Caffe 608, the cafe attached to the new Sundance movie theater. They serve Peet’s coffee, one refill is free, and, most importantly, they make a really nice breakfast sandwich to order. Madison is a great coffeeshop town but a strangely bad town for eating in coffeeshops. And I can’t sit and do math and drink coffee for two hours without getting hungry. Thus the need for a breakfast sandwich, and 608′s is a fine one: bacon, cheddar cheese, and egg on a soft roll, moist without being in any way drippy.
Also, Caffe 608 is big and for the moment uncrowded. Usually it’s just me, a couple of toddler-toting moms, maybe somebody getting interviewed for a job at the open air shopping and lifestyle center, and the slightly crabby manager who resembles a young Frank Black. So I feel quite free to stand up and wander around in circles, very important for getting good math done, but hard to carry off at Espresso Royale at rush time without bumping somebody’s elbow or kicking out their laptop plug.